Robert E. Lee, led an army that killed thousands of people in defense of slavery is being honored by lawmakers in Arkansas.
Lee at age 31 in 1838, as a Lieutenant of Engineers in the U. S. Army
The state of Arkansas has a state holiday honoring Robert E. Lee, the Confederate general who was one of the most important military leaders of a splinter nation founded on the principle that people should be allowed to own other human beings. On Wednesday, a state legislative committee rejected a bill introduced by Rep Nate Bell (R) that would have downgraded the Lee holiday to a “memorial day” and moved it so that it did not coincide with another holiday.
That other holiday: Martin Luther King Day.
The Lee holiday has existed since the 1940s in Arkansas, while the state first recognized Martin Luther King Day in 1983. The two holidays were combined into a joint holiday — one for the man who defended slavery and one for the man who lead much of the effort to eliminate Jim Crow — 1985.